Definition of toleration in US English:



  • The practice of tolerating something, in particular differences of opinion or behavior.

    ‘the king demanded greater religious toleration’
    • ‘There are other forms of religious toleration which are not liberal.’
    • ‘He ignores the long tradition of religious toleration under the Ottoman Empire.’
    • ‘Her desire for religious toleration was in stark contrast to the bigotry that riddled French society.’
    • ‘Liberal ideas first took shape in the struggle for religious toleration in the 16th and 17th centuries.’
    • ‘He rejected confessional Christianity and allowed religious toleration in his kingdom.’
    • ‘Instead they cultivate the value of toleration, which becomes the chief virtue in democratic societies.’
    • ‘Charles then set about promoting the cause of religious toleration for all non-Anglicans.’
    • ‘Cultures also differ in their toleration of uncertainty.’
    • ‘He believed in religious toleration but supported an established church, the Anglican Communion.’
    • ‘William agreed to religious toleration and to Parliament's claims to authority.’
    • ‘His dissertation is a study of the politics of religious toleration in the middle colonies.’
    • ‘They also desired fair trials, religious toleration and vast administrative reforms.’
    • ‘I'd like to think my toleration for different races, religions and sexuality is really high because of the way I was raised and my studies.’
    • ‘He should fight against oppression and to establish justice and the broadest principles of religious toleration.’
    • ‘We are still looking for a positive case to be made on behalf of liberal toleration.’
    • ‘The multicultural character of societies today renders the mutual toleration of differences important.’
    • ‘In 1568 a royal edict extended religious toleration to Catholics, Lutherans, Unitarians and Calvinists.’
    • ‘It was also the the first European settlement to proclaim religious toleration.’
    • ‘Born in London, he distinguished himself by loyalty in politics and toleration in religion.’
    • ‘With varying degrees of consciousness, most Americans seem to appreciate the practical benefits of liberalism and toleration.’
    forbearance, liberality, open-mindedness, lack of prejudice, lack of bias, broad-mindedness, liberalism
    acceptance, tolerance, approval, understanding, endurance, putting up with, ignoring
    freedom of worship, religious freedom, freedom of conscience
    View synonyms


Late 15th century (denoting the granting of permission by authority): from French tolération, from Latin toleratio(n-), from tolerare (see tolerate).